Tag Archives: vegetables

Gripping my Green Thumb

I am surrounded by family that loves to garden and plant! My father-in-law is an awesome gardener; if you know anything about him you know that! You name it, he’s got it! My mom too, she loves plants! When I was younger she had a vegetable garden, but now she is more into plants and flowers. Her yard is beautiful.

I’ve been trying to grip this green thumb for years now. When Andrew and I first got married I bought a tomato plant (that was already big with one tomato on it). It was dead within a month. When we first moved to Kenya, I planted a very small herb garden. It was also dead within a few months.

But….this time I’m determined! I have recently planted a HUGE vegetable garden. I planted 21 different things. From lettuce to cucumbers to onions to melons. I planted all the seeds almost 2 months ago. And now things are starting to grow!

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But I’ll let you in on my little secret. Its not at all that my green thumb is present. Its that Kenyans are awesome gardeners! And I have help! A teacher at our school lives on our compound with us and she has been my lifesaver. She helped me plant, she goes out in the evening and waters it for me (I do too, but she beats me to it sometimes!), basically she helps hold me accountable.  A friend of ours who does our yard work has also been a huge help. And my biggest problem is weeds. I can’t tell what’s weeds and what’s not. So they have been a great help with that too.  There have already been times I’ve wanted to give up (it’s a big project!), but I’m too embarrassed with all these friends helping me. Is that a good reason?    

Hoping to eat from it soon! Come on over and I’ll share. Smile

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More-with-less

That’s the name of my new favorite cookbook. Seriously, it’s great!

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When getting ready to move to Kenya, I knew I would have to leave my cookbooks behind. First of all, they were HUGE and would never fit with the weight limit I had. But mostly, I didn’t know what kind of food I would be able to buy here, so I figured they would be a waste of space if I couldn’t even purchase the ingredients they called for.

We had lunch with some missionaries up in New York in November, and the wife recommended this cookbook for me. They lived in Kenya for some time, and she said that it was perfect for living here.

And it is!

Have you ever seen the movie ‘Julie & Julia’? It is one of my favorites. I feel like Julie right now, cooking through my cookbook. But for different reasons. Smile I am not aspiring to be like someone, or to make something of myself. I have simply found a cookbook that is amazing, and I want to cook my way through it.

Let me tell you a little about this cookbook. Its recipes and suggestions come from several Mennonite families that call for low-cost, low-fat, low-sugar, and less expensive protein ingredients. As it says on the cover, ‘how to eat better and consume less of the world’s limited food resources.’ And since it is created by a Christian group, the pages are filled with encouraging quotes and Bible verses. I even like to just sit and read what people have to say inside.

Andrew and I decided to put stars by each recipe that we try. 1 star is the worst, 5 is the best. This way, when we go back to make it again, we will remember how much we liked it. We also like to make notes.

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I have documented most of my favorite recipes that I have made. That’s how good they are! Now, don’t get me wrong, there have definitely been some recipes that have not turned out so good. Since it is a cookbook focused on using simpler ingredients, there have been some bland meals, and some flat-out gross meals. But about 93.28% have been successful.

Here have been some of my favorites…

Delicious pizza.  Completely from scratch.

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Chicken turnovers with broccoli.  Inside is chicken, green onions, mayo, onion, and CHEESE!

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Wheat thins with guacamole.

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Tortillas.

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Granola.  My personal fave so far. 

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English muffins.

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I LOVE buying produce here. This entire pile of veggies was only $2.84!! 

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And the last picture is important.  My mom was very worried that I would not find any shortening here.  Don’t worry Mom…I have plenty!!

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Bon Appetite! 

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Filed under By Abby